Commercial trucking is integral to our economy and our American way of life. However, large trucks introduce a disproportionate hazard to passenger vehicle occupants involved in a crash due to their sheer size, weight, and physical properties.
What We Have Learned from Our Crash Investigations:
- Minimize all distractions and follow federal regulations about cell phone use.
- Follow posted speed limits; drive even slower in bad weather.
- Stay healthy! Take breaks and exercise, manage fatigue, and avoid driving while taking impairing medications —prescription and over-the-counter.
- Wear seatbelts. And ensure your passengers do, too!
- Drive sober — never get behind the wheel while impaired by drugs and alcohol.
- Implement a fatigue management program based on the North American Fatigue Management Program.
- Purchase trucks equipped with underride protection, advanced speed-limiting technologies, collision avoidance systems (then train drivers on their use).
- Establish policies to address driver medical fitness for duty.
Stats to know
- 4,965: Number of persons killed in crashes involving large trucks in 2020—13 percent of these were pedestrians, pedalcyclists and other nonoccupants, an increase of 9% in a decade. (Source:
NHTSA, Traffic Safety Facts 2020 Data)
- Of the approximately 415,000 police-reported crashes involving large trucks in 2020, there were 4,444 (1 percent) fatal crashes and 101,000 (24 percent) injury crashes (Source:
FMCSA, Large Truck and Bus Crash Facts 2020.
* Of the fatalities in 2020: 71 percent (3,512) were occupants of other vehicles; 17 percent (831) were occupants of large trucks; and 13 percent (622) were nonoccupants (pedestrians, pedalcyclists, or other nonoccupants)